CULTURE

Soprano goes solo

Deborah Myers, the British soprano who has proven especially popular among Greek audiences over recent years, initially through her joint performances with Greek tenor Mario Frangoulis, is now set to return for her own concerts. Myers will play the first of two shows in Athens this coming Tuesday before performing a second night in Patras two days later. For both shows, she will be backed by the Patras Plucked Strings Orchestra, a 30-member ensemble whose lineup includes guitars and mandolins, under the direction of Thanassis Tsipinakis. Two soloists, Thodoris Economou on piano and Yiannis Papanastasiou on saxophone, will accompany Myers and the orchestra. Myers’ repertoire, for her Greek shows, will include material from well-known musicals, film and theater, Greek songs, in both Greek and other languages, as well as material from a forthcoming debut album that is currently being produced in London. The debut album, which is being recorded with the London Symphony Orchestra under the renowned British conductor Martin Yates, is expected to be released later this year. Dabbling with Greek As well as including Greek-language material for her upcoming shows, Myers is preparing another surprise for local fans, an album in the Greek language, for which she is being accompanied by the Patras Plucked Strings Orchestra. Besides her studio commitments for these upcoming releases, Myers has also been particularly active on stage. Just days ago, the soprano flew from her home base to Rome for two performances before returning to the UK for a performance of arias and songs from musicals. The latter field has played a key role in Myers’ musical career. In a recent interview, the soprano recalled a childhood outing with her mother, to see «The Sound of Music,» as the moment when she decided that «I wanted to become a nun or singer. I thought singing was the better course.» Building on fascination Myers eventually built on her early fascination with music by studying singing and piano at the Royal Northern College of Music and Guildhall School of Music in London. She made her stage debut at the Covent Garden Festival as Tuptim in Rodgers and Hammerstein’s «The King and I,» a production which also marked her first of many collaborations with Frangoulis, the Greek tenor. Myers has performed with some of Europe’s most significant orchestras, including the Gothenberg Symphony Orchestra, the Halle Orchestra, the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra. Reflecting her rising stature, Myers, in 1997, performed for a Leonard Bernstein tribute concert at the Herod Atticus Theater in the Greek capital. More recently, Myers performed in Moscow for the very first time in 2002 and then joined forces with Frangoulis for a summer tour of Greece, as well as Cyprus. Last year’s agenda included numerous performances at festivals throughout Europe alongside major vocalists such as Bryan Terfel, Elaine Paige, and Jose Carreras. Also last year, Myers joined Greek star Giorgos Dalaras for his European tour, and then performed Maria Callas tribute shows with Frangoulis in Russia and Cyprus with the Novaya Opera of Moscow. Deborah Myers will be singing in Athens, at the Vrachon Theater, Vyronas, on Tuesday (20/7) and in Patras, at the Ancient Odeon, on Thursday (22/7). (Tickets are on sale at Metropolis music stores, the Vyronas Municipality and Vrachon Theater box office.)